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Le Meridien St. Julians
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Reviews (2,848)
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All reviewsballuta bayrooftop poolsea viewseparate toiletst juliansspa treatmentsthe executive loungespa areamini barhotel barroom was largeweekend breakvisit maltahalf boardomelettetaroconcierge
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Reviewed 11 November 2012 via mobile

Malta is a special place; the sea is crystal clear, there are some stunning places to visit and the people are proud and dignified. There is mercifully little evidence of the "Kardashian" culture that contaminates much of Europe. But if you think you've found a cheap holiday in a 5* hotel you're going to be disappointed. The hotel has many of the physical characteristics of a luxury property but the standard of maintenance and food is 3* at best and occasionally worse.

The first thing that strikes you on arrival is the dreadful piped music and the 'art' for sale in the hotel lobby, all of it would embarrass a 5-year old. Then, if you look up, you'll notice some of the lights are out on the ceiling and if you have drink on the terrace you'll see the table tops are stained and the floor is only occasionally swept. If you eat on the terrace you should avoid anything that involves salad or fresh ingredients. The absence of any genuinely fresh salad or vegetables throughout our stay was inexplicable.

The rooms are comfortable and large but you cannot help but notice the ancient tv, the chipped bed base and the mouldy grout and sealant in the bathroom. The mini bar prices and all incidental charges are eye-watering. And if you venture to the gym you'll find the same story; worn out machines and towels placed beneath a dripping bulge in the ceiling.

There is a tatty sign at the Scirocco restaurant entrance urging you not to take food out of the dining room and it's easy to imagine some of the value-seeking guests loading their handbags with yogurt and cheese to avoid paying for lunch. The good news is there's lots of food but the bad news is it's the same food recycled every night and some of it is not very nice at all.The menu each evening is themed but the food bears little relation to the theme. Mediterranean Fusion Night featured Apple Crumble and Sticky Toffee Pudding - a dish invented at the Sharrow Bay hotel in Cumbria, not Umbria. Likewise Spanish night included Tiramisu and Bread pie. The standard of food is very average but there is masses of it and for many guests this is evidently important.

The best thing about the hotel (by far) is the staff who are all charming but they appear completely untrained and leaderless. Every morning as we shown to our table, we were kindly asked if we would like tea or coffee and every morning nothing arrived. Inevitably these poor people are faced with a barrage of disgruntled guests who have fallen for the 5* marketing con trick and they do their best to cope politely with the unpleasant fall out. Senior management is invisible, leaving the staff to deal with customers who have been let down in a property they fail to maintain.

This probably was a lovely hotel but it appears trapped in a downward spiral of low investment and low room rates and shows all the signs of business that has run out of cash. There is an ironic but prescient 'typo' on one of the promotional posters in the lift. The marketing blurb urges guests to enrol in Starwood's (the parent company) loyalty programme with "lots of exiting benefits"......sadly one of the biggest benefits may be the exit.

  • Stayed: November 2012
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2  Thank David H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 November 2012 via mobile

We checked in around 3pm and discovered our pretty room over looking the bay.Room was a deluxe room good sized and clean.What I did not like was the tv as it was an old set and not modern lcd or led for a 2012 five star hotel.

The pillows were soft too so I recommend you to ask for extra pillows.Bed was lovely,you will sleep like an angel.

Overall was nice and we love this hotel.Breakfast was good too and parking is free for guests.

  • Stayed: November 2012
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Thank James D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 November 2012

The Meridien in St. Julians is in a great location, within easy walking distance of Sliema and St. Julians. The rooftop pool has stunning views over Balluta Bay while on windy or wet days, the indoor pool and spa is a super spot to unwind. The treatments in the spa are excellent, and well worth the investment. The Villa Restaurant is one of my favorites in Malta and the cocktail bar next door to it has lovely views and a great cocktail menu.

On the downside, I found the front-office staff equivalent to Ryanair inflight attendants, constantly trying to sell internet upgrades, seaview upgrades and not very flexible.

Internet is a nightmare in the Meridien. It costs EUR 12 per day in the room and the front office staff told me there was free Wifi in the lobby - yes, it was free but way too slow to work efficiently with. They then told me I could upgrade for EUR 10 per day for a higher speed access (in the lobby) or if I wined or dined at the KuDeTa lounge at the lobby, I could upgrade for EUR 5. Upgrade vouchers in a five-star hotel?????

The second circus was the credit card upon checkin. It's standard procedure to give a credit card as a guarantee for extras upon arrival. However, the Meridien actually block EUR 30 per day on your credit card for the extras even though my room was already prepaid. I, like other guests, got a bit surprised when they handed me a credit card slip to pre-authorize EUR 210 upon arrival. When I was a bit disturbed by this, the staff told me I could instead, leave a deposit of EUR 30 cash per day at the reception. Le Meridien is not a backpackers hostel where guests should do a runner without settling their bill, so I found this whole credit card experience very distasteful. The circus continued as I had not given a credit card authorization - suddenly I needed to pay cash for room service, for massages etc. After the third day, I was so fed up with the whole thing that I had to let them block money for the remainder of my stay.

The first thing you see on the minibar is a big sign saying that if you want it emptied, there is a charge of EUR 5 per day. Again, this is not a no-frills Ibis hotel but a five-star hotel, unfortunately, the Ryanair style approach again!

Seaview room, EUR 30 for upgrade, even though the hotel was half empty. There was no budging the Eastern European lady at the checkin.

Television in my room was an old one which was so far away from the bed that I had to move the furniture closer to the bed so I could see the screen and that the sensor on the remote-control would work.

A few days later I moved to the Preluna Hotel down the road. Free internet in all rooms, plasma TV with movie channels free-of-charge and no credit card circus at the reception.

Le Meridien is a five-star with some great facilities and fantastic location but really, a bit over the top on the Ryanair-style extras! This just gives it a cheap feeling.

Room Tip: Seaviews at the front are definitely much nicer, albeit more expensive.
  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled solo
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Thank KerryBravo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 November 2012

Good location with many restaurants in the area but still quiet during night time.

Well equiped gym with bothe Natilus machines and weights. Nice indoor pool, sauna and jaccuzi. The pool was nice for a relaxing swim given that the water was quite warm. For training purpose the water was too warm. The roof top pool area was nice as well, especially since it was off season it was plenty of space.

The room was spacious and clean. Separate shower and bathtub. Reasonable sized latscreen tv but they did not have the tv-channels indicated in the tv-menue (sky sports f.ex.). Minibar prices were a joke. Extreamly overpriced and they charge you if you move any of the things (not ideal if you travel with children). The houskeeping keept forgeting things such as soap and the complimentary water offered to members of their loyalty program but they at least keep the room clean which is the most important.

The brekfast was fine with fresh fruits and sallads in addition to traditional items such as bacon and scrambled eggs, bread, panncakes etc. Omelet cooked to order but given the price for me the suronding caffes provided better value for money.

  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled solo
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Thank kirderf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 November 2012

Really liked this place, not trying to be something it isn,t and spotless.If you go to St Julians to be honest forget about the Dragonara, Corinthian St Georges etc and go here.Much better value, lovely spa and clean which the Dragonara is lacking.Paid about £ 80 a night through a last minute offer, half of what the Dragonara cost.Well located in middle of bay with an abundance of decent restaurants left or right.All in much prefer the peacefulness of Gozo though.Side view rooms are great.

  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled with family
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Thank eagle10g1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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